Greetings from Executive Director Jesse Mermell

FairTest News

FairTest Examiner - July 2008

Dear Friend:

It was a very productive summer for FairTest. The past several months have been marked by exciting progress as we work to end the misuses of testing at all levels of education.

FairTest was quoted far and wide in hundreds of news stories published as two major institutions of higher learning adopted test-optional admissions policies. Wake Forest University and Smith College recently joined more than 750 other colleges and universities in ending the requirement that students submit SAT or ACT scores as part of their application. In a major achievement for the test-optional movement, Wake Forest is the highest-ranked university to drop the testing requirement . . . at least so far.

FairTest was also in the spotlight surrounding the release of a College Board study which confirmed that the “new” SAT is not a significantly better or fairer predictor of first-year undergraduate grades than the “old” SAT. In fact, the current version of the exam continues to under-predict the performance of young women and students for whom English is not their native tongue. FairTest blasted the College Board for continuing to disadvantage large groups of students being held hostage by an unfair and biased test.

FairTest also saw gains in the K-12 testing front. We were instrumental in blocking imposition of a graduation testing requirement in Pennsylvania by waging an aggressive media campaign, offering testimony before the Pennsylvania State Senate, and speaking at a high-profile education conference. Our activism had an impact across the country, with FairTest making substantial contributions to reform efforts in several other states including Maryland, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island.

Of course, we continue to fight the good fight in Washington, strengthening our alliances and working towards a comprehensive overhaul of No Child Left Behind.

As successful as the past few months have been, we cannot rest on our laurels. FairTest is committed to ensuring that the evaluation of students, teachers, and schools is fair and educationally beneficial – but we need your help! We rely on the generous contributions of friends like you to fund our important work. Help us keep moving in the right direction. Donate to FairTest today.

Thank you for your support.


Jesse Mermell

P.S. Remember, contributions to FairTest are tax deductible!